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Photograph Wild Horses at Grayson Highlands State Park

Mouth of Wilson, Virginia

4.6/5
based on 5 reviews

Details

Distance

1.8 miles

Elevation Gain

306 ft

Route Type

Out-and-Back

Description

Added by Merritt McKinney

Grayson Highlands State Park hosts a band of wild horses within an easy mile from the Massy Gap parking lot. Bring a zoom lens with your camera to capture these incredible creatures in their natural habitat!

The wild horses gather on top of the bald at the end of Horse Trail North located in Grayson Highlands State Park. Because they are wild, it is important to remember not to touch or feed the horses. The horses are accustomed to hikers and will allow you in their near proximity, but bring a zoom lens and keep a reasonable distance from the horses while photographing and observing. 

Park in the Massy Gap Parking Lot and set off towards the wooden gate. Follow Horse Trail North for a half mile until it forks with Rhododendron Trail. Continue left along Horse Trail North for less than a half mile until you encounter an open field and the wild horses. The trail is wide and well-maintained allowing for hikers of all ages and skill levels to enjoy.

For photography, I'd advise bringing a 75mm or longer in order to keep a reasonable distance from the horses. I personally used a 75mm and a 55-200mm.  

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Features

Chillin
Photography
Hiking
Bathrooms
Dog Friendly
Easy Parking
Family Friendly
Forest
Groups
Picnic Area
Romantic
Scenic
Wildflowers
Wildlife

Reviews

This is a very fun destination. The hike can be as long or short as you prefer. There is no guarantee of seeing horses, but I went in the fall and saw several along the trail!

This is a great family-friendly activity. Been a few times and each is just as enjoyable as the last. I'll echo the author, bring a telephoto and keep a reasonable distance. They are indeed wild, and other than trying to keep them that way, I've also seen them bite/kick. Don't be that guy/gal who limps out of there!

This hike was one of my favorites. Every where you looked you had a view, the wild ponies were so friendly.

I have family that live close and this was always a favorite memory of mine growing up and coming here to see the horses and hike. So much to take in and enjoy every where you look. The weather changes constantly, so it's always better to be well prepared for any circumstance. Otherwise, explore because there is so much to be found.

These wild guys are easy-going. One of them walked up to me while I was on the trail. Some do get a bit nervous if you walk or stand behind them. They make funny sounds and warn you. While I was there, they spend most of their time grazing, so most of the photos I got were of them eating haha. Speaking of, please refrain from feeding these ponies! Let's keep the wild in these wild ponies and also consider their health.

Leave No Trace

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures and follow local regulations. Please explore responsibly!

Nearby

Hike and Fish Cabin Creek Trail

Rhododendron Trail to Rock Croppings

Wilburn Ridge and Massie Gap Loop

Twin Pinnacles via Big Pinnacles Trail

Mount Rogers Loop

Backpack the Grayson Highlands